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Sri Lanka joins worldwide protests against WTO meeting in Hong Kong

Dec 4 (AT) Going by the theories of the World Trade Organization (WTO), the IMF advised not to cultivate paddy in Sri Lanka, as paddy could be purchased at very cheap prices from Vietnam and Thailand and if that advice was followed paddy cultivation would have been disappeared from Sri Lanka said Prof Fransua Huta, a Belgium University professor. more..

Time to Rebuild

Dec 4 (AT) On the 26th of this month, Sri Lanka will be commemorating the first anniversary of the tsunami. One year after the killer wave devastated the shores of the country as well as the lives of hundreds of thousands of its inhabitants the progress of the relief and rehabilitation work is far from satisfactory. more..

Accountability in new budget - Ajith Cabral

Dec 4 (WS) President and Finance Minister, Mahinda Rajapakse is to present a development oriented budget on the 8th when he presents the first budget of the Rajapakse government. Ajith Cabral, Economic Advisor to the President and the new Secretary of the ministry of Plan Implementation told 'The Weekend Standard'. more..

War on hard drugs - Cops drag their feet

Dec 4 (WS) President Mahinda Rajapakse has ordered IGP Chandra Fernando to galvanise his men into action against the drug menace, but statistics point to our law enforcers dragging their feet in fighting hard drugs like heroin. more..

Don't get suckered by lucrative investment offers

Dec 4 (WS) With a number of so called 'investment companies' mushrooming in the country, promising colossal profits running into millions within a short period of time, Central Bank (CB) officials have warned the public to be extra vigilant with whom and where they invest their money. more..

UNP hacks JVP, JVP bombs UNP

Dec 4 (LeN) A clash between JVP and UNP supporters broke out at Hali Ela last night and an injured JVP member was admitted to hospital. Later JVP supporters hurled a bomb at the residence of a UNP supporter damaging several vehicles. more..

Faleel was shot for not allowing tigers to swindle tsunami aid -JVP

Dec 4 (LT) Mr. A.L.M. Faleel, Secretary of Kanthankudi Pradeshiya Sabha, who was shot at by members of wanni tiger organization seriously injuring him, was brought to Colombo for treatment yesterday evening. He has been shot in the chest five times say the police. more..

Soldier killed in LTTE attack

Dec 4 (Hindu) One soldier was killed and seven were injured in five separate attacks on Saturday by suspected LTTE cadres in Sri Lanka's northern Jaffna peninsula. According to Army sources in Jaffna, the soldier was shot dead by a suspected LTTE man, while the seven suffered injuries during grenade attacks across the Jaffna peninsula. more..

From where did ex-President Chandrika get money to buy two flats in Paris?

Dec 4 (AT) The London Evening Standard (December 1, 2005) reported that former President Chandrika Kumaratunga has bought Prince Andrew's mansion Sunninghill Park located in the Berkshire-Surrey border for 10 million sterling pounds. The newspaper also reported that she had purchased two flats in Paris. more..

Be careful not to catch the Sri Lankan Syndrome

Dec 4 (LS) Sri Lankan Syndrome has many facets and faces. One form of this syndrome is that only a handful of people are capable of stepping down honourably after holding prestigious positions in the country. On one hand as a result of their own acts and deeds, some people make a disgraceful exit from the limelight. more..

Norway no scapegoat for Peace Process setbacks

Dec 4 (ANN) Norwegian Minister and Peace Facilitator Eric Solheim met Indian Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran in New Delhi on Friday (Dec 2) and exchanged notes on the evolving situation in Sri Lanka as regards the peace process after President Mahinda Rajapakse assumed office on Nov 19. more..

President to hold crucial talks in New Delhi

Dec 4 (PIS) President Mahinda Rajapakse will make a state visit to India, beginning possibly on December 27, for crucial talks which will cover the resumption of the negotiations with Tiger guerrillas. The groundwork for this visit was laid during a two-day trip to New Delhi by Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera. more..

Muttur violence death toll increases to five

Dec 4 (TN) The death toll in clashes that took place in Muttur division since Saturday afternoon has increased to five with the recovery of three more bodies of Muslim persons Sunday early morning from an abandoned well in Muttur town area. One Muslim person was admitted with cut injuries in Muttur government hospital, more..

Six SLA soldiers killed, four wounded in Jaffna

Dec 4 (TN) Six Sri Lanka Army soldiers were killed and four wounded when a claymore mine hit their tractor Sunday at 12:52 p.m. 200 meters south of Kondavil Junction on Palaly Road in Jaffna. Wounded soldiers were rushed to Palaly Military hospital, civilian sources said. more..

Several UNP MPs to cross over to government at budget

Dec 4 (LeN) It is reported that UNP parliamentarians in groups and as individuals are holding talks with President Mahinda Rajapaksa to join the government. According to sources close to the President three groups have met him. One group has held talks with the President individually. more..

New Joint Left Alliance

Dec 4 (LeN) Five left political parties are to form a joint left alliance. The five parties that have got together to form the alliance are the Lanka Sama Samaja Party, the Communist Party, Sri Lanka Mahajana Party, the Desha Vimukthi Janatha Party and the Democratic Left Front. more..

UNP criticism of the budget is not practical! -Ranjith Siyamblapitiya

Dec 4 (LT) UNPs fuction is that of a traditional opposition says Mr. Ranjith Siyambalapitiya, Deputy Minister of Finance and Higher Education. He points out that UNP criticism against the budget proposals should be ignored. more..

Faleel, who was shot for not allowing tigers to swindle tsunami aid, died in Colombo

Dec 4 (LT) Mr. A.L.M. Faleel, Secretary of Kanthankudi Pradeshiya Sabha, who was shot at by members of wanni tiger organization seriously injuring him and was brought to Colombo Private Hospital for treatment yesterday evening succumbed to his injuries this morning at about 8,45 a.m.. more..

Ministerial summit of WTO is a snare to destabilize our economy - PNM

Dec 4 (LT) In a letter addressed to President Mahinda Rajapakse, Dr. Gunadasa Amarasekera, on behalf of Patriotic National Movement, warns about the repercussions Sri Lanka would have to face if the country agrees to the proposals brought forward by World Trade Organization (WTO) at its 6th ministerial summit to be held on 13th December. more..

President says that no new liquor licenses will be given in the future

Dec 4 (SLBC) President Mahinda Rajapakse has stressed that licenses will not be issued to open liquor shops n future. The President also assured that new laws will be enforced to curb robberies, crimes and the drugs menace. more..

A new programme to solve the man-elephant conflict

Dec 4 (SLBC) The Wildlife Department will introduce a new programme to solve the conflict between elephants and people. More suitable environment and livelihood for elephants will be created in the national sanctuaries. There are about four thousand elephants in Sri Lanka, and 70 percent of them live outside the sanctuaries. more..

'No matter how much we scrape this pot, an empty pot cannot deliver any "peace" rice from it'

Dec 4 (TW) "The recently concluded Sri Lankan Presidential Election was an empty pot. There was no cooked rice called "peace" in it. And the results have shown that no peace would have been fetched by using a "vote" spoon in it" said Pathmini Sithamparanathan MP, (Jaffna) TNA Parliamentarian more..

Ceasefire mission warns of 'dangerous trend' of violence

Dec 4 (AP) The Norwegian-led international ceasefire monitoring mission overseeing the country's uneasy truce with Tamil Tiger rebels warned today that escalating hostilities could cause "irreparable damage" to the country's peace process. more..

Mahinda seeks parliamentary majority

Dec 4 (SAMN) President Mahinda Rajapakse is reportedly keen on securing the required number in Parliament to garner a two thirds majority ahead of landmark constitutional amendments and also move for a Cabinet reshuffle. more..

Elections chief to unfold voters data

Dec 4 (SAMN) All eligible voters would be able to ascertain whether their names are included in the annually revised electoral register for 2005 when the Commissioner of Elections exhibits the current Register at all Grama Niladhari offices throughout the country for a month from January 3, 2006, said Deputy Commissioner W. P. Sumanasiri. more..

Anura not upset over prime ministry

Dec 4 (SAMN) Anura Bandaranaike said last week he wasnít offended that President Mahinda Rajapakse had chosen not to make him prime minister ó instead, he had known he wouldnít get the job. "Iím not upset," Bandaranaike said, in an interview with the Sunday Island. "I didnít expect him to give it to me. Iím a realist, Iím not a fool." more..

Govt-LTTE go-between to head tsunami rehab body

Dec 4 (LNP) President Mahinda Rajapakse is to establish a Reconstruction and Development Agency (RDA) to spearhead his Jaya Lanka programme to handle tsunami aid, including aid to areas controlled by the LTTE, and has named businessman Tiran Alles, who maintains friendly contacts with the Tiger guerrillas, as the chairman-designate. more..

Kotakadeniya intent on setting police right

Dec 4 (LNP) Former Senior DIG H.M.G.B. Kotakadeniya appointed last week as Advisor to the Defence Ministry by President Mahinda Rajapakse will be losing a substantial salary package he currently earns as Group Security Director of Richard Pieris and Company by returning to state service several years after he retired from the police as a Senior DIG. more..

Prabha`s ultimatum unmistakable

Dec 4 (LNP) Some 48 hours ahead of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) leader, Velupillai Prabhakaran`s `Maveerar (Great Heroes) Day` day speech last Sunday, Colombo`s diplomatic community, it seems, had a sneak preview of sorts. more..

CBK- expensive charge on taxpayer

Dec 4 (LNP) Saying it was a `national responsibility` to ensure former President Chandrika Kumaratunga security after she steps down from office, the Public Security and Law and Order Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayake has called for among others for a 138-strong police contingent and a 50-member commando unit to guard Kumaratunga. more..

War on drug menace heightened

Dec 4 (SO) The proliferation of heroin has assumed such alarming proportions that the new President Mahinda Rajapakse in the Mahinda Chintana has vowed to eradicate the drug menace. The government policy in eradicating drugs is now clearly stipulated in the Mahinda Chintana. more..

Short fuse in Sri Lanka

Dec 4 (BG) Recent events in Sri Lanka suggest that the island desperately needs help from international peace brokers if it is to avoid slipping back into a bloody internecine war that has been suspended since a 2002 cease-fire. more..

SLMM calls for immediate end to violence

Dec 4 (TN) Pointing to the "countless attacks" in Jaffna peninsula, Trincomalee and Batticaloa districts, the SLMM warned that "there is a real danger that these disturbances and hostilities can spread and result in irreparable deterioration of security and prevent any real restoration of normalcy in the affected communities," more..

Third day of play washed out in India as rain continues to frustrate cricketers

Dec 4 (AP) The third straight day of play in the opening cricket test match between India and Sri Lanka was washed out Sunday because of a wet outfield. Not a single ball has been bowled in the first three days of Sri Lanka's first test tour of India in eight years, more..

Six Lankan soldiers killed in Jaffna landmine blast

Dec 4 (HT) In the most serious violent incident since President Mahinda Rajapaksa assumed office on November 19, six Sri Lankan army soldiers were killed and four injured in a claymore mine blast in Kondavil, about 5 kms from the northern Tamil town of Jaffna on Sunday. more..

Six Sri Lankan soldiers killed by suspected rebels

Dec 4 (Reuters) Six soldiers were killed in a claymore fragmentation mine attack by suspected Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka's war-torn north on Sunday, the military said -- the deadliest in a spate of attacks since a 2002 cease-fire. The attack 4.5 miles (7 km) east of the military-held town of Jaffna more..

A homecoming of sorts for Muralitharan

Dec 5 (IE) Muttiah Muralitharan was quite open about his feelings. Being a Tamil, with strong ancestral links in Tamil Nadu, he identifies with the area. He also felt that despite being Sri Lankan, there was some emotional attachment to the Chepauk, now known as the MA Chidambaram Stadium, and wanted to able to bowl at the venue for the first time in his career. more..

Sri Lanka to invest US dlrs 700 million in oil refinery: Fowzie

Dec 5 (IRNA) The Sri Lankan government has taken initiatives to increase the refining capacity of oil in the country by 40 percent with an investment of US dlrs 700 million, says Petroleum & Petroleum Resources Development and Rail & Transport Minister, A H M Fowzie. more..

TNA MP on US visit

Dec 5 (TN) Ms Pathmini Sithamparanathan, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Member of Parliament (MP) for Jaffna district arrived Friday evening in US for a two week speaking tour. She accepted an invitation by the Florida Tamil Sangam to speak at the organization's annual event on 11 December, more..

Little variations in local buying habits

Dec 5 (LBO) Sri Lankan shoppers buy the same sort of items and brands irrespective of whether they shop in a plus super market or the neighborhood corner store. Market research firm AC Nielson however says supermarkets that account for 13 percent of trade in consumer goods should be able to attract more people since shopper habits are uniform. more..

Tsunami: The Rehab muddle

Dec 5 (LBO) Almost a year after the tsunami devastated Sri Lanka's costal communities, many are still languishing without permanent housing due to government inefficiency, under estimating of reconstruction cost and political interference according to a study. more..

Firefight near Neervely SLA camp, one soldier killed

Dec 5 (TN) A Sri Lanka Army (SLA) soldier seriously wounded when unknown gunmen attacked Neervely Jaffna SLA camp at 6.10 p.m. Sunday succumbed to his wounds, military sources in Colombo said. SLA soldiers returned fire and the firefight lasted more than five minutes, sources in Neerveli said. more..

LTTE-Muslim leaders meet to diffuse tension in Muttur

Dec 5 (TN) A LTTE delegation led by Trincomalee district political head Mr.S.Elilan and a delegation of Muslim civil leaders led by Moulavi Careem, President of the Muttur Mosque Federation, met Sunday evening at Kaddaiparichchan in the presence of Mr. Arthur Tveiten, head of the SLMM and explored ways to diffuse escalating tension in Muttur division more..

HRCSL to formulate Rights education policy for Sri Lanka

Dec 5 (TN) The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) has been conducting a series of seminars with the aim of formulating a national level human rights education policy. The first seminar was held in Vavuniya Thursday, the second in Trincomalee Friday and the third in Batticaloa Saturday, more..

Bangladesh down Sri Lanka

Dec 5 (FE) A blazing century from Raqibul Hasan powered Bangladesh to an emphatic 62-run victory over Sri Lanka in the Tri-nation U-19 Cricket tournament at BKSP in Savar Sunday. The hosts recorded the third consecutive victory in row after beating England U-19 by four runs and five wickets in two consecutive matches. more..

Lanka urges international community to condemn LTTE attack

Dec 5 (UNI) Strongly condemning the claymore mine attack in Jaffna which killed six soldiers, the government of Sri Lanka today urged the international community to condemn such "provocative acts" by the LTTE. "The government condemns in the strongest possible terms the killing of six army personnel in the claymore mine attack at Kondavil, in Jaffna. more..

Nullifying Chandrika - Amunugama budget to affect the fruit and vegetable exports

Dec 5 (AT) The Sri Lanka Fruit and Vegetable Producers, Processors and Exporters Association (FVPPEA) has been in existence for the last 25 years and while taking stock of what contributions they have made to the economy and agriculture they are also looking at the future contributions to the economy and their share of returns. more..

Two innocent Tamils ruthlessly murdered for failure to submit to the diktat on the election boycott

Dec 5 (AT) Reports are beginning to emerge of the ruthless reprisal killings by the LTTE of innocent Tamils, who failed to submit to the outfitís Aanai edict regarding the adherence of the boycott of Sri Lanka Presidential election held on 17 of November. more..

SPUR hits back at ICJ for making unbalanced statements on the raids of suspected Tamil Tiger agents in Melbourne

Dec 5 (AT) Australia's leading legal non-governmental organization, the International Commission of Jurists,(ICJ), Australian Section, was taken to task by the Society for Peace Unity and Human Rights (SPUR) for not presenting a balanced view in criticizing the raids on suspected Tamil Tiger homes in Melbourne. more..

Anton Balasingham speaks at London Alexandra Palace

Dec 5 (TW) LTTE Chief Negotiator Anton Balasingham spoke on Nov 27th at the commemorative meeting for LTTE Great Heroes Day held at the London Alexandra Palace. Following is the translation of his interesting and insightful speech made in Tamil: more..

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